May-June 2011

‘Why do I give to the Texas District and County Attorneys Foundation?’

Jennifer Vitera

TDCAF Development Director in Austin

People have lots of reasons for contributing to the Foundation. Here are just a few:

    “There are lots of organizations competing for our charitable dollars. Although the symphony, parks, and museums are worthy causes, I’d rather to give to organizations that benefit those who are sick, under-privileged, or abused. TDCAF has joined my list of preferred charities because its mission—training prosecutors and their staff—results in better advocacy for the victims of crime who depend on us.” —Lisa McMinn, State Prosecuting Attorney in Austin

    “Primarily, I contribute to the Foundation because I owe TDCAA more than I will ever be able to repay. Having served on the Association’s Board of Directors, I understand that it takes much more money than is available through dues and grants to continue to make and keep our new young prosecutors the best professionals of tomorrow. Because of all these things and many more, I will continue to contribute to the Foundation and encourage all I know to do the same.” —Patrick C. Batchelor, Attorney at Law, former County Attorney in Navarro County

    “I contribute to the Foundation in two capacities. In one, I give on behalf of the Brazoria County District Attorney’s Office because I believe in investing in the future. The Foundation is appropriately named: Together we are building a foundation of training, education, experience, and history for current and future prosecutors to draw upon to see that justice is done. 

      “Secondly, I contribute personally because I can think of no better way to remember Joyce Wheeler, my children’s second mother, who loved my children as her own. Without her assistance, I could not have been district attorney, so I give to the Foundation as a memorial to her.” —Jerilynn Yenne, Criminal District Attorney in Brazoria County

    These are just some of the reasons people give to the foundation—there are many more! Read other folks’ reasons at and downloading our Annual Campaign brochure (below as a PDF).

2011 Annual Campaign Membership Challenge

We hope by now you have received the 2011 Annual Campaign brochure or postcard, which is your invitation to be a part of the Texas District and County Attorneys Foundation. The foundation is committed to continuing and improving the excellent training provides to Texas prosecutors, investigators, key personnel, and victim services coordinators.

    This year, we will conduct our second membership fundraising challenge. Just like last year, there are two different fundraising goals for our membership groups, one for elected prosecutors and one for investigators, key personnel, and victim coordinators.

    From our elected members, we are asking for 100-percent participation from all 333 elected prosecutors across the State (either through a personal unrestricted gift or a restricted gift) to the Annual Campaign. Please take a look at the brochure we mailed you for more information and send in a donation today!

     For our investigators, key personnel, and victim assistance coordinators, these groups have challenged each other to see which can raise the most money for the foundation. Last year the investigators took home the win, but 2011 is a new year! The field is wide open! We will track the results based on dollars raised compared to percentage of membership in each of these groups. We will feature a monthly update on who’s leading the way on our website and in The Texas Prosecutor.

    Funding from members, foundations, corporations, and the community at large greatly increases the quality of service we are able to offer to you, our members. I am asking you to please consider supporting the foundation by making a contribution of any size; you may send your gift using the return envelope in the Annual Campaign letter you will soon receive, or go directly to www to make a quick and safe contribution. The more funding we secure, the better TDCAA can develop programs to ensure the safety and security of our communities.

    We appreciate your support and consideration!

2010 Annual Report available online

We are honored to show you our 2010 Texas District and County Attorneys Foundation Annual Report (a PDF appears below). It summarizes what we’ve accomplished in the last year, lists all donors, and explains plans for the next year and beyond. Please take a few minutes to review it at

Recognition and thanks

Last issue I mentioned the Leadership Texas Program that I am participating in, which took me to Dallas in March where I had the chance to meet local leaders and learn about issues facing the North Texas region, along with the many wonderful things happening in the community. During my visit I had a chance to meet with a few of our wonderful TDCAF Board and Advisory Committee members along with TDCAF corporate supporters. I will be in Midland and Odessa this May where I also plan on visiting with members along the way.

    Thank you to Criminal District Attorney Matt Powell in Lubbock for setting up TDCAF introduction meetings in March.

    And congratulations to our very own TDCAF Advisory Committee member Carol Vance who was honored by the Houston Bar Association Auxiliary with the 24th Annual Leon Jaworski Award.

Latest fundraising efforts

The 3rd Annual Foundation Golf Tournament will take place Wednesday, September 21 (the week of TDCAA’s Annual Criminal and Civil Law Update) in Corpus Christi. (The exact location of the tournament will be announced later.) We are also planning on adding a silent auction to the TDCAF dinner this year. Funds raised through the golf tournament and silent auction will support the 2011 Annual Campaign. We are asking members to please help the foundation identify corporations and individuals who might be interested in sponsoring or donating an auction item this event. Sponsorship levels are Platinum, $10,000; Gold, $5,000; Sterling, $2,500; and Bronze, $1,000.

Sponsors needed for DV training

We are still looking for corporate and foundation partners from across the state to support our domestic violence training initiative. Our total budget goal for this program is $100,000; in the last issue of this journal we mentioned Dow Chemical’s support of the Family Violence Manual. We still need additional contributions.

     Please contact Jennifer Vitera at vitera at tdcaa dot com if there is someone in your area to whom we can send more information to regarding either one of these efforts.